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September October 2015 Cover
SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2015 Educational and cultural occupancies

In this issue, NFPA Journal looks at the problem of school science lab demonstrations gone wrong, and how new requirements in NFPA 45, Fire Protection for Laboratories Using Chemicals, are designed to minimize the threat of burns and other injuries in these settings. Plus: An update on the school security vs. fire safety discussion; how fire museums are going interactive; a new effort in Congress to require U.S. colleges to report sprinkler protection in student housing; and much more.


Unsafe Science

Science demonstrations that go disastrously wrong have become a frequent occurrence in schools and other educational settings across the country. NFPA 45 aims to eliminate that trend.

Hands-On History

Why fire museums are adopting an interactive, learn-by-doing approach to engage visitors in the rich history of fire and firefighting.

2014 Catastrophic Multiple-Death Fires

Twenty-four fires defined as catastrophic killed 128 people last year, including a mother and her eight children in a home fire in Kentucky.

2014 Fire Loss Report

The fire service responded to nearly 1.3 million fires in the United States in 2014, incidents that resulted in $11.6 billion in property damage.

In Compliance


Think for yourself: Why the code should not be confused with a design manual.

NFPA 101

New code-compliant buildings offer comparable egress systems regardless of occupants’ mobility.


Proposed 2017 NEC changes promote safe work practices in line with NFPA 70E.


Why equivalencies aren’t the same as an anything-goes approach to installation.


First Responder

How fast is fast enough? NFPA 1710 and the controversy over response times.


A deeper look at the environmental cost of fire and fire protection.


New age appropriate digital learning tools for fire-prevention education.

Wildfire Watch

How NFPA programs help cash-strapped state agencies address wildfire.


First Word

NFPA President Jim Pauley on his visit to Costa Rica and NFPA’s global view.


A proposal in Congress calls for colleges to report sprinkler protection in student housing.


Comments from the NFPA Journal audience.

News + Analysis

In A Flash

NFPA seeks to strike a better balance between school security and fire safety.


Fire Incidents from across the country.

Looking Back

The 1962 (and counting) Centralia coal mine fire.